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New Moray Firth wind farm plans unveiled

By Alan Beresford

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PLANS to build a new offshore wind farm in the Moray Firth have been unveiled.

Ocean Winds have unveiled plans to develop their Caledonia site in the Moray Firth.
Ocean Winds have unveiled plans to develop their Caledonia site in the Moray Firth.

Offshore wind energy developers Ocean Winds, has announced its plan to maximise the full opportunity of its Caledonia Offshore Wind Farm – a 429km2 site won as part of the ScotWind leasing round – targeting a capacity of 2GW.

Caledonia extends Ocean Wind’s presence in the Moray Firth, building on the wealth of experience and data captured during the development, construction, and operation of their Moray

East and Moray West developments. In the case of the latter scheme, Buckie Harbour is set to serve as the Operations and Maintenance, supporting an estimated 60 jobs.

COO for Ocean Winds, Grzegorz Gorski said: “With its proximity to Moray West and Moray East, Caledonia will consolidate Ocean Winds’ long-term commitment to the Moray Firth region and its vital new role as the nation’s secure and clean electricity supply.

"We will build on our knowledge of a technology that is not just proven but optimised and on the expertise acquired by our teams, to successfully deliver another wind farm in Scotland before the end of the decade."

Mark Baxter, Project Director for Caledonia Offshore Wind Farm, commented: “The water is shallow enough to support fixed-foundations, the distance from shore is short enough to support AC instead of DC transmission, yet the wind resource is great enough to deliver high output and therefore low cost power.

"Caledonia lies in the 'Goldilocks Zone' for offshore wind and will create valuable opportunities to boost local supply chains. We are excited to continue contributing to the delivery of national offshore wind targets.”

The Supply Chain commitments made by Caledonia Offshore Windfarm will be reflective of the planned 2GW target capacity. Caledonia Offshore Wind Farm will formally launch consultation on the project with the publication of its Offshore Scoping Report in the third quarter of this year. A leading consultancy has been appointed to deliver the report, which will outline the wind farm development and the studies, and undertake the research and consultation for its Environmental Impact Assessment, a vital part of the planning application.

Mr Baxter continued: “The scoping report will enable the envelope of the project to be considered by the communities, organisations and individuals who are our neighbours in the Moray Firth.

"We look forward to discussing our proposals at the consultation events when we publish the report which is being drafted this summer.”

With Offshore Survey Campaigns due to start shortly, the Caledonia project team is targeting a consent submission in 2024.

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